Vikings assistant head coach/defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier and 49ers Head Coach Mike Singletary came into the league together as rookie roommates in 1981 and then they won a Super Bowl together as vital pieces to the dominant Bears defense in 1985.
Now they both hold prominent coaching roles with their respective teams. As the Vikings host the 49ers on Sunday, they’ll both be coaching at the Metrodome. But they’ll be apart and on different sidelines.
Though they’re adversaries this week, Singletary explained during a conference call with Twin Cities reporters that their relationship has remained close since their playing days in Chicago concluded.
“Leslie and I go back a long ways,” Singletary said. “He’s one of my best friends. We are very close.”
Singletary said that he speaks with Frazier “at least once a week, if not sometimes a little more, but most of the time once a week or every ten days.”
Both heady and intense players for the Bears in the 80s, Singletary and Frazier have ascended the coaching ranks. Singletary was named the 49ers interim coach in October of 2008 and then was offered the job as San Francisco’s head coach in December. Frazier, meanwhile, joined the Vikings in 2007 as defensive coordinator and had the title of assistant head coach added prior to the 2008 season.
Frazier has interviewed for head coaching positions in the past and his success as the defensive boss in Minnesota will do nothing but make him a more attractive candidate for franchises down the road.
“He is a guy that any organization would be proud to have him,” Singletary said. “He’s got the right mindset; he loves his players, and he loves his family. He is a very hard worker. There is not enough time for me to tell you how much value and how much trust I have in him.”
Singletary cited a love for the Lord, family and football as reasons they’ve remained such close friends over the years. Because of their close relationship, Singletary has gained an insight into Frazier that he says most other people don’t have.
“He seems to be a quiet guy, really calm and reserved, but inside of him is a rage; inside of him is a madman,” Singletary said partially in jest, but also with a tone of sincerity. “He doesn’t let it come out too often, (but) it’s in there.”
Asked when Frazier does let it out, Singletary quipped, “It comes out in his play-calling.”
Tags: Leslie Frazier
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